Swiss perspectives in 10 languages

Hubcaps and soapsuds

Swiss Car Event, the annual Swiss tuning community event, was held in June in the Geneva Palexpo exhibition halls, the same space that hosts the annual Geneva Motor Show. A particular feature this year: the “Sexy Car Wash”.

Most of us have driven behind what appears to be an ordinary car – so no Ferrari, Porsche or Maserati – only to discover a gigantic exhaust pipe that roars and spits when the car tears away from the red traffic light like a Formula 1 race car.

With the way modern motors have developed, tuning fans no longer really have to get their hands dirty. Nowadays the motor performance is enhanced with electronic chips. Turbochargers, high-performance fuel pumps and racing wheels are all the things that make the hearts of the mainly male attendees beat even faster.

The Fast and Furious films are their Bibles and the exhibit halls of Palexpo are their churches for the weekend. More than 10,000 believers gather to worship the more than 1,000 modified and customised cars on display here.

And for those who had finished looking at the showpieces on display, there were plenty of other exhibits and events, from car and motorcycle stunts and flying motocross artists, to the “Sexy Car Wash”.

Text and photos: Thomas Kern. (Translated from German by Jeannie Wurz)

You can find an overview of ongoing debates with our journalists here. Please join us!

If you want to start a conversation about a topic raised in this article or want to report factual errors, email us at

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR